Friday, September 30, 2016

Jumping butterballs!

September 30, 1938 -
RKO Studios released the eighth Marx Brothers film, Room Service, on this date.

Although she seems much older and mature, Ann Miller was actually only 15 years old when she made this film. She had lied about her age and obtained a fake birth certificate when she was about 14 years old, which stated that she was 18. She was so tall, poised and beautiful that she pulled it off.

September 30, 1948 -
Howard Hawks released his iconic western, Red River, starring John Wayne and Montgomery Clift on this date.

Howard Hawks had great respect for John Wayne, even though many people didn't consider him a great actor. "He's a damn good actor. He does everything, and he makes you believe it," Hawks later commented.

September 30, 1952 -
The motion picture process Cinerama -- which employed three cameras, three projectors and a deeply curved viewing screen -- made its debut with the premiere of This Is Cinerama at the Broadway Theater in New York City on this date.

Cinerama technicians were working on the system right up to the last minute. The was no time for a trial run. It wasn't until the actual premiere in front of an audience that the entire presentation of this film, from start to finish, took place.

September 30, 1958 -
The first network series to be filmed entirely in New York City, the police drama, Naked City debuted on ABC-TV on this date.

Because the show was filmed in black and white on location in New York City, the police cars for the show were painted in false colors so that they would not be mistaken for real police cars.

September 30, 1960 -
The first prime-time animated series aimed at adults, The Flintstones, premiered on ABC-TV on this date.

Fred and Wilma Flintstone were the first married couple, ever, to be seen actually in bed together on US television.

September 30, 1982
Cheers, the comedy television series that ran eleven seasons from 1982 to 1993, premiered on this date.

The series finished 77th - dead last - in the Nielsen ratings the week it debuted.

Today in History:
September 30, 1452
It's the anniversary of the printing of the Gutenberg Bible in Mainz, Germany on this date. It was the first book ever printed with movable type. What made Gutenberg's invention revolutionary was not that it allowed you to print letters on paper, but that you could print an infinite number of different pages from a small number of letter blocks simply by rearranging them.

The first section of the Bible came out on this day. He printed 180 copies on expensive Italian paper. It was designed to be used for public reading in the dining halls of monasteries. But within three decades there were print shops all over Europe, and Gutenberg's invention launched a revolution in education.

Today about four dozen copies of the Gutenberg Bible survive. One of the most recent copies to come on the market was auctioned in New York in 1987 and sold for more than $5 million.

September 30, 1630 -
Pilgrim John Billington, who arrived on the Mayflower, was hanged at Plymouth for killing John Newcomen with a musket, on this date.

Billington was the first Englishman executed in New England.

September 30, 1846 -
On this evening in 1846, Mr. Eben Frost, suffering from a violent toothache, called upon Dr. William Thomas Green Morton. Dr. Morton administered ether and extracted the tooth.

Thus ether was used for the first time as an anesthetic on this date.

September 30, 1927 -
Babe Ruth hit his 60th home run of the season, on this day.

(Mark McGwire was born on October 1, 1963, however, so this no longer matters to some. Although, the Bambino was only hopped up on booze.)

September 30, 1938 -
The Germans occupied the Sudetenland in late summer of 1938. This enraged the British and the English, who both feared for the loss of the Sudetenland's celebrated pea crops.

British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain flew to Germany to meet Hitler at Bertesgaden to discuss the situation, on this date.

Hitler assured him that there would be plenty of peas to go around, and Chamberlain returned to England with the famous proclamation of Peas in Our Time. World War II was therefore avoided and did not break out until some time later.

September 30, 1955 -
Teen idol James Dean was killed in a car accident that probably could have been avoided if he had had his car inspected and tuned up regularly, obeyed all posted highway signs, and driven only when alert and sober on this date.

(Remember kids, if you are going to drink til you drop -  drop where you drink.)

And so it goes.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

It's National Coffee Day

If you love coffee (I don't), there are a bunch of places you can score free or very low cost cups of joe!

If you're passing through Penn Station today, Krispy Kreme is giving away a free (small) cup of coffee and a glazed donut. (You're welcome.)

For those of you not near your church calendar, today is the feast of St. Michael the Archangel. It's also known in England as Michaelmas Day.  St. Michael is the patron saint of the sea and maritime lands, of ships and boatmen, of horses and horsemen. He was the Angel who hurled Lucifer down from Heaven for his offenses against God.
There’s a legend concerning Lucifer falling into a blackberry bush after being expelled from heaven by St. Michael and spitting on the blackberries to make them bitter so that they cannot be picked after Michaelmas. So kids, unless you want a mouthful of Satan's saliva, don't eat those blackberries tomorrow (unless you're into that.)

September 29, 1948 -
Laurence Olivier's powerful interpretation of Shakespeare's melancholy Dane, Hamlet premiered in New York City on this day.

Laurence Olivier was 41 when Hamlet was released. Eileen Herlie, who played Hamlet's mother Gertrude, was 30. Herlie also played Gertrude on Broadway in 1964 with Richard Burton's Hamlet, which was filmed and shown in a limited release. Whereas she was 11 years younger than her "son" when Hamlet was played by Olivier, she was seven years older than Burton.

September 29, 1953 -
The family comedy Make Room for Daddy, starring Danny Thomas, premiered on ABC TV on this date.

Penney Parker beat a then-unknown actress named Mary Tyler Moore for the role of Terry. According to Danny Thomas, the only reason Parker got the part was because he felt Moore's nose looked different enough from his so that nobody would believe she was his daughter.

September 29, 1954
The movie musical A Star Is Born, (the third version of the film, fourth, if you count What Price Hollywood) starring Judy Garland and James Mason, had its world premiere at the Pantages Theater in Hollywood on this date.

The film was re-edited several times. Premiering at 181 minutes, the studio (Warner Bros.) cut the film by 30 minutes despite the objections of director George Cukor and producer Sidney Luft (Judy Garland's husband). In 1983, all but 5 minutes of the cut footage was found and re-instated, but some footage had to be reconstructed using production stills.

September 29, 1954 -
United Artist released the Joseph L, Mankiewicz film, The Barefoot Contessa, starring Ava Gardner and Humphrey Bogart on this date. (If you haven't seen this movie, seek it out!)

Joseph L. Mankiewicz wanted James Mason, whom he had just directed in Julius Caesar, for the part of the nobleman. MGM executive Nicholas Schenck, who had had a vehement disagreement with the director, would not release Mason for the film. According to Mankiewicz, he ended up with Rossano Brazzi, "who cannot act, cannot be sensual... could hardly speak English..." Ironically, Rosemary Matthews, who was hired to help Brazzi with his English, and Mankiewicz later married.

September 29, 1955 -
The only film Charles Laughton directed, The Night of the Hunter opened in New York City on this date.

Charles Laughton reportedly worked well with the boy playing John, but did not get along with the girl playing Pearl and shouted at her on occasion. As Laughton had the camera continue to roll after the scenes were finished, the camera often caught her reacting to him. Some of these "out-takes" were used in the final editing process as reaction shots to the Preacher's character.

September 29, 1959 -
One of the first series that featured the lives of American teenagers, The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis, starring  Dwayne Hickman, Bob Denver and Tuesday Weld premiered on CBS-TV on this date.

The series served as one of the influences in the development of the Hanna-Barbara cartoon Scooby Doo, Where Are You!. In Scooby-Doo, the character of Fred Jones was based on Dobie Gillis; Velma Dinkley on Zelda Gilroy; Daphne Blake on Thalia Menninger, and Norville "Shaggy" Rogers on Maynard G. Krebs.

September 29, 1960 -
We were all welcomed into the Douglas household when My Three Sons, starring another of TV favorite alcoholic dads, Fred McMurray, premiered on ABC on this date.

The show was originally going to be named The Fred MacMurray Show, but Fred MacMurray didn't like the idea.

September 29, 1963 -
My Favorite Martian, starring Ray Walston and Bill Bixby premiered on CBS-TV on this date.

Ray Walston admitted that he regretted taking the role of Uncle Martin. Walston felt that the role typecasted him and prevented him from getting substantial roles for many years. He took the role because the salary afforded him and his family a comfortable lifestyle. He did enjoy working with Bill Bixby and two remained lifelong friends.

September 29, 1967 -
Gerry Anderson's supermarionation take on superheroes, Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons premiered on this date in the UK.

According to Gerry Anderson on the DVD commentary for the Pilot episode The Mysterons were written as an invisible enemy because Gerry didn't want to offend any aliens if life were ever found on Mars.

September 29, 1985 -
The Sci-Fi anthology series created by Steven Spielberg, Amazing Stories, premieres on NBC-TV on this date.

The title is taken from a bi-monthly, Sci-fi journal famous in the 1940s and '50s and edited by TV and film writer Howard Browne.

Today in History:
September 29, 1399
... For God's sake, let us sit upon the ground and tell sad stories of the death of kings...

Richard II was deposed on this date,which only served him right for having posed in the first place. He was succeeded by Henry IV Part I.

September 29, 1513 -
Spanish explorer Vasco Nunez de Balboa discovered the Pacific Ocean, on this date (although he may have discovered it four days earlier - I'm not sure what the Spanish Navy's stance was on the the whole rum ... question.)

How something that covers roughly a third of the earth's surface could have been lost for so long is a question that stumps historians to this day.

It's Miguel de Cervantes' birthday today. Born in 1547, Cervantes is best known as the author of Don Quixote, a cunning satire on mental illness. The work is an epic treatment of the perennial question, "wouldn't the world be better off if we were all crazy?"

The answer from the novel is a qualified yes: the story supports the premise, but its length and lucidity suggest that the author himself was not crazy, which contradicts the premise.

Ever since the publication of Don Quixote, the idea of improving through world through mental illness has taken root in the popular culture of the west. From the good soldier Svjek and Prince Myshkin to Chauncy Gardener, Elwood P. Dowd and Forrest Gump, western readers and filmgoers have a galaxy of benevolent lunatics to show them the way to a better, purer existence. Grand mal seizures, delirium tremens, and hallucinations are merely the price of admission to their wistful world of blissful ignorance.

The sane and hard-working do not come off nearly so well in film or literature. In fact, sane and hard-working people seldom even appear in film or literature. No one wants to read about them, or spend good money to watch them go about their plodding lives, because most of us are surrounded by sane and hard-working people already and know what they're like—they're just like us, only less so.

Early to bed and early to rise may make a man healthy, and wealthy, and wise, but it won't do a goddamn thing for his Nielsens. In fact, if you're healthy, wealthy, wise, and well-rested, you're only going to piss the rest of us off. Lighten up, slack off, drink up, and spend plenty of quality time with imaginary friends.

That's the real road to happiness—or at least our acceptance, without which you have no right to be happy.

September 29, 1957 -
An explosion at the Chelyabinsk-40 complex, a Soviet nuclear fuel processing plant, irradiated the nearby city of Kyshtym with strontium-90, cesium-137 and plutonium on this date.

This accident releases twice the radioactivity of the Chernobyl incident.


September 29, 1976
At his birthday party, musician Jerry Lee Lewis accidentally shoots his bass player Norman Owens twice in the chest, trying to open a soft drink bottle with a .357 magnum. Owens survived and files a lawsuit.

Now don't you wish you were at that party !!!

September 29, 1988 -
Stacy Allison was one of several female mountaineers who took part in a competition to see who could be the first to climb Mount Everest.

After harsh weather conditions forced the other participants to turn around midway through their climb, Allison surprised many (including herself) by reaching the peak of 29,000 feet, being the first American woman to do so on this date.

September 29, 1989 -
Zsa Zsa Gabor, a person famous for no apparent reason and with no visible means of support (It's too weird to think that Zsa Zsa and her sisters were the original Kardashians, without the sex tapes), was convicted of slapping a Beverly Hills police officer on this date.

Gabor later complains that she was denied a jury of her peers, saying "It was not my class of people, There was not a producer, a press agent, a director, an actor."

And so it goes.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

National Drink Beer Day

As if Americans needed to be reminded to drink beer; the Oktoberfest season comes to an end and today is a great reminder to enjoy the world’s most popular adult beverage.

Today is also St. Wenceslaus' Day, patron saint of brew masters, named after Wenceslas I the Duke of Bohemia (commemorated in the song, Good King Wenceslas,) who was martyred on this date.

September 28, 1949 -
The first of the 12 films Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis made, My Friend Irma, premiered in New York City on this date.

Based on the popular radio program, Marie Wilson (Irma), Hans Conried (Prof. Kropotkin), and Gloria Gordon (Mrs. O'Reilly) reprise their radio roles. Conried replaced Felix Bressart, who was cast in the film but died during production.

September 28, 1963 -
Tennessee Tuxedo and His Tales cartoon debuts on CBS-TV on this date.

This show was produced at the same animation studio as The Bullwinkle Show and other Jay Ward cartoons. Many of the same animators who had previously worked on some of the Jay Ward cartoons, worked on this. Since, the animation style is extremely similar, it is often packaged in syndication with the Jay Ward shows.

September 28, 1968 -
The Beatles' single, Hey Jude, went to number one on the Billboard Charts and stayed there for nine weeks. (Listen how the song starts with one instrument and the record ends with with 50 instruments playing.)

The Beatles inner circle was shifting when Paul McCartney wrote this song. John Lennon had recently taken up with Yoko and cast off his first wife, Cynthia; McCartney had broken off his engagement with his longtime girlfriend Jane Asher. He was the only Beatle to reach out to Cynthia and John's son, Julian at this time.

September 28, 1980 -
Billions and billions of brilliant moments on TV are about to be aired - Carl Sagan's 13 part Cosmos premiered on PBS.

The filming of the series lasted one year during which Carl Sagan and his production team traveled around the world, filming in places like India, Egypt, Italy, Cambodia, France, Alaska, Mexico and USA, among others.

September 28, 1987 -
Star Trek: The Next Generation premiered  on CBS-TV with the episode Encounter at Farpoint on this date.

When Gates McFadden originally signed on for the series, it was on the understanding that her character would ultimately become a romantic foil for Captain Jean-Luc Picard. This did not materialize and she was becoming increasingly frustrated with the lack of character development for Dr Crusher. Clashes with the producers led to her being released from her contract, hence Dr Crusher's absence from Season 2 and replacement by Dr Kate Pulaski, played by Diana Muldaur.

September 28, 1994 -
Tim Burton's love letter to the early career of Edward D. Wood, Jr., Ed Wood premiered on this date.

Initially, Bela Lugosi Jr. didn't want to see the film because he thought it wouldn't portray his father correctly, but upon further persuasion he saw the film, and agreed that Martin Landau honored his father in the performance. The two later became friends.

Today in History:
September 28, 48 BC
Pompey was not having a great day today.

After the First Triumvirate of Rome (between Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus, Julius Caesar, and Marcus Licinius Crassus) had fallen apart, the Roman civil war had not been going well for Pompey. After the catastrophic defeat to Caesar at the Battle of Pharsalus in 48 BC, he hightailed it to Egypt, where he had been employed as a protector. Upon landing in Egypt, Roman general and politician Pompey was murdered on the orders of King Ptolemy of Egypt. Pompey head was lopped off and sent to Caesar as an offering.

Ptolemy, reading the global tea leaves as much as 11 year olds can, thought to gain favor with Caesar, by killing Pompey. Ptolemy had misjudged the Roman sense of honor completely. Caesar demanded the assassins be executed, and had Pompey's head cremated with honor. Ptolemy was later deposed in favor of his sister, Cleopatra.

British history began on September 28, 1066, with the Norman invasion of England. The Normans were a group of Franks who'd grown weary of being so Frank. Their decision to become Normans cost them their Frankness, so they joined together and invaded England under the leadership of William (or, in Norman, "Norman") the Conqueror.

Prior to this invasion, Britain had been occupied mostly by Angles, Saxons, and large stones (who had never properly appreciated cricket, fog, or Kipling and had therefore been unable to invent England.) William (Norman) the Conqueror realized that, if it was ever going to amount to anything, what England really needed was a Great King, preferably someone very much like himself.

Appropriate arrangements were made.

September 28, 1850 -
The United States Navy abolished the practice of flogging. Among the crimes for which this was the penalty are: stealing poultry from the coop (12 lashes), being lousy (six), stealing a wig (12), and being naked on the spar deck (nine).

I believe nine lashes for being naked merely encouraged most of the men.

September 28, 1902 -
It's the birthday of Ed Sullivan, born in New York City on this date. He was writing a gossip column for the New York Daily News called "Little Old New York," moonlighting now and then as a master of ceremonies at variety shows and benefits. He was emceeing a dance contest when somebody asked him if he'd like to try hosting a show on this new thing called television.

The Ed Sullivan Show premiered live on CBS in 1948, and within a few years about 50 million people watched it every Sunday night. It was like vaudeville. It had opera singers, ventriloquists and magicians and pandas on roller skates and big stars. Ed Sullivan said, "Open big, have a good comedy act, put in something for children, and keep the show clean."

He was a shy, awkward man, but he loved performers. He personally chose every guest for his show. He was one of the first hosts to invite black performers, including Jackie Robinson, Duke Ellington, Richard Pryor and James Brown, on his show.

Ed Sullivan: the last television host who tried to appeal to everyone in America.

September 28, 1920 -
A Cook County grand jury indicts the White Sox players paid to throw the 1919 World Series to the Cincinnati Reds on this date.

Even though they are found not guilty, Baseball Commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis bans them all from professional baseball for life.

September 28, 1963 -
Roy Lichtenstein’s pop art work Whaam!, depicting in comic-book style a US jet shooting down an enemy fighter, is exhibited for the first time on this date.

In time, it will become one of the best known examples of pop art.

September 28, 1964 -
Let's put it this way: I don't have a good work ethic. I have a real casual relationship with hours. I don't understand why, in entertainment, the hours are as long as they are. It seems like everything takes forever, and no one can tell you why, exactly.

Janeane Garofalo, comedian, actress and writer was born on this date.

September 28, 1978 -
A nun at the Vatican discovered the lifeless body of Pope John Paul I, formerly Albino Luciani, in bed. The pontiff had been on the job only 33 days before unexpectedly dying in his sleep, after having taken some sort of pills with dinner.

The church refused to grant an autopsy.

See Godfather III for further explanations.

September 28, 1989 -
Former Philippine president Ferdinand Marcos died in Waikiki, Hawaii, after three years in exile on this date. He was in ill health and awaiting US charges on looting funds from his country.

His wife keeps the cadaver in a refrigerated coffin for years.

(Wow, this is the second time in about a week that I've mentioned the Popsicle ex-dictator.)

September 28, 2008 -
The world's first private spaceship went into orbit, on this date, when the Falcon 1 was launched by SpaceX, a company founded by Elon Musk.

The entire launch was broadcast live from Kwajalein Atoll in the Pacific Ocean.

And so it goes.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

... up and down this same old strip

Google is celebrating it's 18th birthday, despite the the fact that it has listed six other dates for it's start.

So it is now old enough to see some of the things you can find when you search the intraweb.

September 27, 1947 -
Delmer Daves stylish noir-thriller, Dark Passage, opened on this date.

Between the film's unorthodox "first person perspective" and Humphrey Bogart's negative press from his support of the Committee for the First Amendment established in the face of the hearings being done by the House Un-American Activities Committee led to the film having a poor performance at the box office.

September 27, 1951 -
Marvin Lee Aday, singer songwriter was born on this date.

Despite his famous moniker, Marvin doesn't like to eat meatloaf.

Also, we've seems to survive the first debate with just a bad case of the 'sniffles' and the fact the Hillary Clinton can be blamed for everything, including the Lindbergh kidnapping.

September 27, 1964 -
The Beach Boys appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show for the first time on this date.

They performed  the song I Get Around that evening. The song was released as a double A-side single in May 1964 with Don't Worry Baby.  It is considered one of the best ever single releases along with Penny Lane/Strawberry Fields Forever by The Beatles and Don't Be Cruel/Hound Dog by Elvis Presley.

September 27, 1975 -
The documentary film by Albert and David Maysles, Grey Gardens, premiered in the New York Film Festival on this date.

The film was something of an accident, in the sense that Albert Maysles and David Maysles came across Edith Bouvier Beale and Edith 'Little Edie' Bouvier Beale when involved in another project--a movie about (Jacqueline Kennedy's sister) Lee Radziwill's childhood. As part of research, the Maysles brothers were introduced to the Beales, and were captivated by their world. Deciding not to make the Radzwill film, they turned instead to the Beales, and a year after first meeting the two women, began filming.

Today in History:
September 27, 1854
The first great disaster involving an ocean liner in the Atlantic occurred when the steamship Arctic sank in foggy weather after colliding with the iron bow of the Vesta on this date. When Captain Luce of the Arctic orders women and children into the lifeboats, the crewmen rebel and take the boats for themselves.

Of 435 on board, only 85 survived -- and none of them women or children. It is the first major ocean liner disaster in the Atlantic. The Arctic disaster shattered high Victorian notions of how men were supposed to respond under duress.

Today is the 110th anniversary of the publication of Albert Einstein's paper "Does the Inertia of a Body Depend Upon Its Energy Content?" in the Annalen der Physik, introducing the equation E=MC2.

Before this, E equaled just about anything you wanted it to equal. Just think what the atomic bomb would have been like if E = apple cores or dolphin entrails.

September 27, 1938 -
RMS Queen Elizabeth was launched by Queen Elizabeth (after a couple of G & T's) at the John Brown and Company yard in Clydebank, Scotland.

She (the ship and not her majesty) was the largest passenger liner ever built and named to honor Queen Elizabeth, wife of King George VI of England and mother to Queen Elizabeth II.

September 27, 1940 -
Japan, Germany and Italy, signed the Tripartite Pact in Berlin on this date. The pact saw the formation of the World War II Axis powers, an opponent group against the Allies.

The Axis alliance bizarrely hoped to persuade the US against joining the Allies during the war, but failed. In 1940, Hungary was forced by Germany to became the fourth country to sign the Pact, allying themselves with the Axis powers.

September 27, 1959
Typhoon Vera, otherwise known as the Isewan Typhoon, killed 4,464 people on the Japanese island of Honshu and injured 40,000 more. 1.5 million were made homeless.

The severe storm conditions of Typhoon Vera caused the most of destruction and loss of life of any tropical cyclone in Japanese history.

September 27,  2008 -
Chinese astronaut, Zhai Zhigang, aboard Shenzhou 7, became the first person from China to walk in space on this date.

Mr. Zhiagang would immediately return to his space craft when he realized that he could not get a good wi-fi connection in space.

And so it goes

Monday, September 26, 2016

Fasten your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy night

Perhaps we're all wrong - tonight's debate will have the candidates discussing the issues that face our great nation, in depth, soberly, and politely.

Yeah, that's not going to happen.

September 26, 1580 -
Francis Drake returned to Plymouth, England, on this date, ending a three-and-a-half year journey around the world (all the while, delivering his tasty little cakes.)

It was nearly four more centuries, however, before The Beverly Hillbillies premiered on CBS-TV (on this day in 1962).

The lengthy lapse between these watershed events has never been explained.

September 26, 1962 -
The cult film Carnival of Souls, premiered on this date

Upon release in 1962 the film was a failure in the box office, but its subsequent airings on late night television helped to gain it a strong cult following. Today it is regarded as a landmark in psychological horror.

September 26, 1964 -
S. S. Minnow started it's three hour tour (and lasted 98 shows) when Gilligan’s Island premiered on CBS-TV, on this date.

In the very first shot of the opening credits, the American flag over the harbor can be seen flying at half-mast. The reason was the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, shortly before the shot was filmed.

September 26, 1968
(The real) Hawaii Five-O moved to it regular broadcast night on CBS TV on this date.

Jack Lord lived in Beverly Hills when he was asked at the last minute to read for the part of McGarrett. He read for it on Wednesday, flew to Hawaii on Friday, and was in front of the cameras the following Monday. He later became a permanent resident and prominent figure in Hawaii, contributing to many local causes and charities, and often mentioned publicly in consideration for political office. After he died, the state erected a statue of him.

September 26, 1969 -
An unsuspecting American public is forced to deal with the vaguely incestuous family comedy series The Brady Bunch which premiered on ABC-TV on this date. Remember, the Bradys were so good, clean and wholesome that didn't even go to the bathroom (you never saw the toilet.)

Sherwood Schwartz's technique for auditioning child actors was to set out a bunch of toys on his desk, then during the interview see if the child paid attention to him or was distracted by the toys. If the toys went unheeded, Schwartz knew the child had the concentration needed to work on a television series.

September 26, 1969 -
The Beatles release the Abbey Road album in London, on this date.

It was their 13th album in the U.K. It was also their last album together as a group.

September 26, 1975 -
Great Scott! Twentieth Century Fox released upon an unsuspecting nation, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, when it premiered in Los Angeles on this date.

The set builders forgot to put an extra door in the lab set, thus Dr. Scott had to crash through the wall for his entrance.

September 26, 1980 -
The concert film of Bette Mildler's 1979 tour, Divine Madness, was released on this date.

The film was edited together from four separate concerts filmed over three consecutive nights at Pasadena's Civic Auditorium in Pasadena, California in 1979.

Today in History:
September 26, 1895 (he may have been born in 1901 - who knows) -
George Raft was an American film actor who was most closely identified with his portrayals of gangsters in crime melodramas of the 1930s and 1940s, was born on this date. George may have achieved an unenviable place in Hollywood folklore as the actor who turned down some of the best roles in screen history, most notably High Sierra, The Maltese Falcon, Casablanca and Double Indemnity.

Also, George Raft also gave more actresses and bit players 'the clap' than any other actor during the 30s.

What a wonderful way to be remembered.

September 26, 1687 -
Troops laid siege to Athens led by Venetian general Francesco Morosini rained cannon fire down on the Acropolis and the Turkish soldiers garrisoned inside. One cannonball penetrated the Parthenon, which happened to serve as the Turks' gunpowder magazine.

The roof, walls, and 16 columns were blown off by the resulting explosion.

Oops, sh*t happens.

September 26, 1937 -
The Empress of the Blues, Bessie Smith, sustains grave injuries in a traffic accident on US Highway 61 on this date. She is taken to a colored hospital in Clarksdale, Mississippi and her arm amputated. Smith died later that day from blood loss.

According to legend, Bessie had been refused treatment by a closer, whites-only hospital.

September 26, 1945 -
Secretly, I wanted to look like Jimi Hendrix, but I could never quite pull it off.

Bryan Ferry (the Lord of Louche) lead singer of the group Roxy Music and solo artist, was born on this date.

September 26, 1960 -
John F. Kennedy and Richard Nixon faced off in the first televised presidential debate. Nixon had been recuperating from illness yet refused to wear makeup for the camera, looking haggard and gray.

Radio viewers gave positive opinions for Nixon's performance but so many people saw the debate televised that Kennedy gained the lead in the polls, ultimately winning the election.

Remember what I said about Checkers, his kids' dog.

September 26, 1983 -
The Soviet Union's early warning system wrongly signaled the launch of a US Minuteman intercontinental ballistic missile. Lt. Col. Stanislav Petrov, in charge of the system, decided the alarm was false and did not launch a retaliatory strike. (Please thank Col. Petrov in your prayers tonight for saving the world.)

Because of military secrecy and international policy, Petrov's actions were kept secret until 1998. In 2004 the San-Francisco-based Association of World Citizens presented Petrov a World Citizen Award.

September 26,  2003 -
Robert Palmer, the famous blue eyed soul singer also known for his sharp suits, died in Paris of a heart attack on this date.

His first big break into the music business was a stint as lead singer for The Alan Bown Set in the late sixties.

And so it goes

Sunday, September 25, 2016

It's also National One Hit Wonder day.

Celebrate responsibly - listen to only one or two of them at a time.
Baby Got Back - Sir Mix-a-Lot

I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) - The Proclaimers

I’m Too Sexy - Right Said Fred

Who Let the Dogs out?? -  Baha men

The song was once used as one of Siri's hidden Easter Eggs.

It's also World Pharmacist Day

September 25, 1943 -
An excellent Merrie Melodies cartoon, A Corny Concerto was released on this date.

For some reason, the identity of the black duckling in this short has prompted much debate among cartoon fans as to whether or not it is in fact Daffy Duck.

September 25, 1961 -
One of the greatest sports movies of all time, The Hustler, premiered on this date.

Paul Newman and Jackie Gleason established a friendship on the set. At one point, Newman got a little cocky about his newfound pool skills and challenged the much more experienced Gleason to a $50 bet on a game. Newman broke, then it was Gleason's turn. He knocked all 15 balls in and Newman never got another shot. Gleason recalled that the next day Newman paid him off with 5000 pennies.

September 25, 1964 -
The series Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C., starring Jim Nabors (who was not married to Rock Hudson) premiered on CBS-TV on this date.

According to producer Sheldon Leonard, the Marines gave them unlimited access to their equipment, because they felt the series would be good for their image.

September 25, 1965 -
The Beatles Cartoon Show premiered on ABC-TV on this date. It racked up a 13 score (or 52 share), then unheard of in daytime television.

The series because notorious for its static visual style with the Beatles being depicted in their mop top and suit look from A Hard Day's Night, despite the fact the band had abandoned that look while the series was in production.

September 25, 1970 -
Everybody was implored to 'Get Happy' when The Partridge Family on this date.

Originally, the show was to star the real life musical family The Cowsills. However, they backed out when the producers decided to have Shirley Jones take over the role of the mother from the group's actual matriarch, Barbara Cowsill.

September 25, 1987 -
20th Century Fox releases the Rob Reiner directed film, The Princess Bride, starring Cary Elwes, Mandy Patinkin, Christopher Guest, Robin Wright and Peter Falk, in limited release, on this date.

When asked what his favorite thing about making this film was, André the Giant replied, without skipping a beat, "Nobody looks at me." He felt treated as an equal, without people staring at him because of his grand height.

Today in History -
On this day in 1789, Congress proposed twelve amendments to the Constitution of the United States. Habeas Corpus Christi and Freedom from Unreasonably Surging Seashores were ultimately rejected but the other ten passed and have come to be known as the "Bill of Rights."

In honor of this important anniversary, I have chosen to celebrate my favorite amendment, in the hopes that it may also soon be yours. I am speaking of the Ninth Amendment.

Like that of Beethoven, the Constitution's Ninth is the standard against which all others must be measured. Unlike Beethoven's, it doesn't climax with a resounding choral tribute to Joy (but that could be fixed).

Here is the ninth amendment: "The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people."

This important amendment should not be neglected just because of some awkwardly placed commas.

Under the first amendment, for example, I have been given the right to say any stupid thing that pops into my head. (This should not be confused with the responsibility of doing so, which is reserved to journalists. Donald Trump seems confused about this.) This is an enumerated right. My right not to have to listen to anyone else's idiotic opinion is not enumerated, but it's just as important.

In the second amendment, in order to preserve peace and order in the state, I have been granted the right to stockpile dangerous weapons. Unenumerated but no less important is my right not to be caught in the crossfire while you fire off a couple of clips at a Sunday School picnic. (The NRA generally seems to have missed this subtle point.)

Under the eighth amendment, I have the right not to be drawn and quartered, boiled in pitch, burned at the stake, or belittled by a British producer on national television. But this does not overrule my right to be entertained.

Let us all take a moment to give thanks to the Ninth Amendment, which preserves us not only from the tyranny of government, but the far more dangerous tyranny of one another.

September 25, 1890 -
The "1890 Manifesto", sometimes simply called "The Manifesto", was a statement which officially ceased the practice of plural marriage in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church).

Announced by church president Wilford Woodruff on this date, the Manifesto was a dramatic turning point in The Mormons renounced the practice of polygamy after six decades in exchange for statehood for Utah. This was a great day in the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, as many of the church leaders are finally able to sleep with both eyes closed.

September 25, 1919 -
President Woodrow Wilson became seriously ill and collapsed after a speech to promote the League of Nations in Pueblo, Colorado, on this date. On October 2, 1919, Wilson suffered a serious stroke that almost totally incapacitated him, leaving him paralyzed on his left side and blind in his left eye. For at least a few months, he was confined to a wheelchair. Afterwards, he could walk only with the assistance of a cane. The full extent of his disability was kept from the public until after his death on February 3, 1924.

Remarkably, Wilson was, with few exceptions, kept out of the presence of Vice President Thomas R. Marshall, his cabinet or Congressional visitors to the White House for the remainder of his presidential term. His second wife, Edith, would continually tell people for the next five years that the President was in the bathroom and couldn't be disturbed. This was, as of 2016, the most serious case of presidential disability in American history and was later cited as a key example why ratification of the 25th Amendment and a large supply of TP at the White House was seen as important.

September 25, 1980 -
John Bonham, drummer for the seminal rock band, Led Zeppelin, actually did choke to death in his sleep on a regurgitated ham sandwich on this date.

The coroner's report concludes that it was his own vomit and no one else's.

September 25, 1981 -
Sandra Day O'Connor became the first female justice of the U.S. Supreme Court when she was sworn in as the 102nd justice on this date.

She had been nominated the previous July by President Ronald Reagan. (One of my faithful reader was one of her law clerks.)

There are 91 days until Christmas (90 days until Hanukkah.)

(I'm sure many of you have failed the naughty/ nice test already. Maybe you still have time.)

And so it goes

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Screw the Oxford comma

Today is National Punctuation Day (!,?.)

It's a celebration of the lowly comma, correctly used quotation marks and other proper uses of periods, semicolons, and the every mysterious ellipsis.

September 24, 1046 -
I was going to tell you that today is the feast day of St. Gerard Sagredo of Hungary.

During mass, hordes of heathens, stormed his church, bundled him up and wheeled him to the top of  Gellert Hill, in Hungary (but you don't care.)  Those heathen hordes shoved the cart down the hill, then beat him to death on this date

(but I'm sure this is all meaningless to you because there's no Feast of St. Gerald Sagredo festival in your neighborhood.)

September 24, 1938 -
One of the craziest cartoons Looney Tunes ever produced, Porky in Wackyland was released on this date.  You need to watch it a few times to really get everything that's going on in this one.

This cartoon set the bar for outlandishness in animation.

September 24, 1945 -
Michael Curtiz' tense film noir, Mildred Pierce, starring Joan Crawford and her enormous shoulder pads, was released on this date.

After seeing the film, James M. Cain sent Joan Crawford a signed first edition of the original novel. The inscription read: "To Joan Crawford, who brought Mildred Pierce to life just as I had always hoped she would be, and who has my lifelong gratitude."

September 24, 1958 -
The Donna Reed Show premiered on ABC-TV on this date. Ladies (and some men), don't you always wears heels, pearls and chic frocks to do the housework?

During the show's early years, whenever a scene takes place in a supermarket, look very closely in the background. Chances are, you'll see large amounts of Campbell's Soup, V-8 Vegetable Juice, Franco-American Spaghetti, and various Johnson & Johnson products including their famous baby powder. Not coincidentally, those brands were the series' original advertisers during its network run.

September 24, 1961 -
Students of Great Comedy lined up around the block to enroll in Whatsamatta U when The Bullwinkle Show moved to primetime on NBC TV on this date.

The first story of the season was an epic multi-part adventure about the moose and squirrel's search for the elusive Kirwood Derby. In November 1961, Durward Kirby threatened to file suit. Jay Ward reportedly responded to the threat, in his usual style, by offering to let Kirby use any name of his choosing for any character from his show.

September 24, 1964 -
We all visited 1313 Mockingbird Lane for the first time when The Munsters premiered on ABC-TV on this date.

The first season opening credits were an outrageous parody of the opening credits of The Donna Reed Show, which always began with Donna Reed lovingly passing out lunches to her departing family members as they left the house one by one. Yvonne De Carlo, as Lily Munster, did the same thing.

September 24, 1968 -
The TV show Mod Squad premiered on ABC-TV on this date.

Series creator Buddy Ruskin, a former Los Angeles police officer, used his experiences with a special L.A.P.D. youth squad as the basis for this show.

September 24, 1977 -
Everyone got to order their first drink from Isaac when The Love Boat set sail for the first time on ABC-TV on this date.

Gavin MacLeod, Bernie Kopell and Ted Lange are the only actors to appear in every episode of the series.

September 24, 1991 -
Nirvana's album Nevermind was released 25 years today on this date.

Within a year of the album's release, much of the hair metal and hard rock that had commanded the airwaves was being phased out in favor of the “grunge” style often attached to Nirvana.

Today in History:
September 24, 1896
... The easiest way to get a reputation is to go outside the fold, shout around for a few years as a violent atheist or a dangerous radical, and then crawl back to the shelter.

On this date in 1896, a young Minnesota woman gave birth to a depressive, witty young alcoholic named Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald.

The boy did badly in school and went to train for war in 1918. While training at Camp Sheridan in Alabama, he fell in love with Zelda Sayre, the mentally unstable daughter of an Alabama Supreme Court judge.

The war ended before Fitzgerald could be sent overseas and shot, however, so he went to New York to become rich and famous. He became neither, so Zelda broke off their engagement.

Fitzgerald then moved back to Minnesota. A year later he became a famous writer. He moved to Connecticut, Zelda married him, and they became drunken celebrity wrecks.

They spent a lot of time in Europe. This lasted until Zelda went mad and Fitzgerald died.

Fitzgerald is best remembered for having said the rich were different, even though Hemingway kept telling him to act like a man and strip down, grease himself up and get into a boxing ring.

Oh yeah, he also wrote several books.

... Our lives are defined by opportunities, even the ones we miss.....

September 24, 1947 -
Majestic 12, a secret committee of scientists, military leaders, and government officials, was allegedly established by a secret executive order issued by President Harry Truman (who may or may not have been sober at the time) to investigate UFO activity in the aftermath of the Roswell incident.

Conspiracy theorists consider the Majestic 12 major evidence supporting the government-cover-up theories. The FBI has since attempted to debunk any documents associated with the committee. Debate continues to this day about whether or not the committee existed.  (And remember, you didn't read any of this here.)

September 24, 1954 -
Steve Allen sat down at his piano and the Tonight Show premiered on NBC on this date.

Simply called Tonight, the show was a blend of comedy, interview and musical performance that set the basic template for future late-night television.

September 24, 1964 -
The Warren Commission report on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, (which had occurred on November 22, 1963, in Dallas, Texas,) was presented to President Lyndon B. Johnson on this date.

The report did little to quiet conspiracy theories, but it documented that Lee Harvey Oswald had acted alone and that the Secret Service had made poor preparations for JFK’s visit to Dallas, had failed to sufficiently protect him, and was not part of a larger-scale plot.

President Johnson never slept another full nights' sleep again.

September 24, 1969 -
The trial of the "Chicago Eight" (later seven) began on this date. Demonstrations began outside the court house, with the Weatherman group proclaiming the "Days of Rage" in protest of the trial. The Chicago Eight staged demonstrations at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago to protest the Vietnam War and its support by the top Democratic presidential candidate, Vice President Hubert Humphrey. These anti-Vietnam War protests were some of the most violent in American history as the police and national guardsmen beat antiwar protesters, innocent bystanders and members of the press.

Five defendants (Tom Hayden, Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, David Dellinger and Rennie Davis) were convicted of crossing state lines to incite riots at the 1968 Democratic national convention; the convictions were ultimately overturned.

September 24, 1970 -
Luna 16 was the first robotic probe to land on the Moon and return a sample to Earth. An automatic drilling rig was deployed and 101 grams of lunar soil was collected.

The samples were returned to Earth on this date and marked the first time lunar sampled were recovered by an unmanned spacecraft.

September 24, 1991 -
Theodor Seuss Geisel, an American writer and cartoonist best known for his classic children's books under the pen name Dr. Seuss, including The Cat in the Hat, Green Eggs and Ham, How the Grinch Stole Christmas and One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish, died on this date.

No greater tribute was given to the Doctor than when the Reverend Jesse Jackson appeared on SNL following his death.

And so it goes

Before You Go
- Have a good thought this weekend for Terry Jones this weekend.  Spokespeople for him announced that the former Monty Python member has developed a rare and progressive form of dementia which affects his ability to communicate.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Apparently, it floats in gasoline, too.

Ivory bar soap floating was a mistake. They had been over mixing the soap formula causing excess air bubbles that made it float.

Customers wrote and told how much they loved that it floated, and it has floated ever since.

September 23, 1944 -
Frank Capra's screwball comedy, Arsenic and Old Lace finally gets it US general release on this date. The film was based on a hit play and had to wait to be released until after it Broadway run had ended.

Some 20 years before filming this movie, actress Jean Adair had helped to nurse a very sick vaudeville performer named Archie Leach back to health; by the time she was asked to reprise her Broadway Arsenic and Old Lace role as Aunt Martha for this film, Adair and Leach, now known as Cary Grant, were old friends.

September 23, 1962 -
The youth of America want to know, "Where did all that dog poop go?"

The Jetsons debuted on Sunday night's prime time lineup on this date.

The first program ever to be broadcast in color on ABC-TV.

September 23, 1967 -
The Letter by Box Tops topped the charts on this date.

At 1:58, the Box Tops' version of this was the last #1 hit to be shorter than two minutes in length. (You can thank me for the earworm later.)

September 23, 1968 -
Lucille Ball's third TV series, Here's Lucy premiered on this date.

The show came about because of a business transaction. In 1968, The Lucy Show had been running for six seasons, and the ratings remained solid. Lucille Ball sold the Desilu studio that year, however, so in order to retain ownership of her series, she ceased production on The Lucy Show and created Here's Lucy. The new series had a slightly different plot and new character names (plus roles for Lucy's kids), but continued with the same cast and timeslot.

September 23, 1969 -
Marcus Welby MD, starring the not terribly sober Robert Young, premiered on ABC-TV on this date.

The exterior of Dr. Welby's office was the same building used as the Cleaver family home on Leave It to Beaver with only Welby's shingle as the new addition to the set.

September 23, 1970 -
The only American film Akira Kurosawa almost directed, Tora! Tora! Tora!, was released on this date. Akira Kurosawa agreed to direct the Japanese part of the film only because he was told that David Lean was to direct the American part. This was a lie, David Lean was never part of the project. When Kurosawa found out about this, he tried to get himself fired from the production - and succeeded.

When Japanese characters in the film refer to the date of the attack, they are actually saying "December 8," which is technically correct, as Japan is a day ahead of the U.S.; however, it is translated as "December 7" in the subtitles to avoid confusing U.S. audiences.

September 23, 1990 -
PBS premiered Ken Burns powerful 11 hour miniseries The Civil War on this date.

Shelby Foote became a sudden celebrity after the success of this series. Foote's phone number was listed in his local phone book and he received frequent calls from fans. He never removed his number from the phone book and received calls whenever the series aired for the rest of his life.

Today in History:
September 23, 480 BC
It's the birthday of the Greek poet Euripides, born near Athens on this date.

Euripides has the greatest number of plays that have survived for the modern reader -19 of them—including Medea.

Remember -  Euripides, I ripa dos.

September 23, 63 BC -
Gaius Octavius Thurinus (Augustus Caesar) was born on this day. The first real Roman Emperor, Caesar introduced the famous Pax Romana. This was a political policy which stated that any country which did not object to being conquered by Rome would be conquered by Rome.

Countries not wishing to be conquered by Rome stood in violation of this policy, and were therefore invaded until they agreed to be conquered. This ensured peace throughout the world.

September 23, 1779 -
During the Revolutionary War, while on break from Led Zeppelin, the American navy under Scotsman John Paul Jones (Robert Stack), commanding from Bonhomme Richard, defeated and captured the British man-of-war Serapis on this date. Jones, chose to name the ship after Benjamin Franklin's Poor Richard’s Almanac.

Fierce fighting ensued, and when Richard began to sink, Serapis commander Richard Pearson called over to ask if Richard would surrender and Jones responded, "I have not yet begun to fight!"--a response that would become a slogan of the U.S. Navy. Pearson surrendered and Jones took control of Serapis. Imagine the amount of rum consumed (it was an American Ship - I'm sure there was no sodomy!)

The Bonhomme Richard sank two days after the battle.

September 23, 1939 -
Sigmund Freud was not having a good day. He had been suffering from the late stages of cancer of the jaw when he decided to commit suicide with the help of his personal physician, Max Schur on this date.

The good doctor administered 21 mg of morphine -- a lethal dose, in three large doses in the space of several hours. Sometimes 21 mg of morphine is just 21 mg of death.

September 23, 1949 -
Happy Birthday Bruce!

If you are of a certain age, at one point, Bruce meant everything to you.

September 23, 1950 -
Congress passes the McCarran Act, also known as The Internal Security Act of 1950, overriding Harry Truman's veto. The act provides for severe restrictions on civil liberties, suspension of free speech, and placing of undesirable Americans in concentration camps.

Much of the Act has been repealed, but some portions remain intact.

So watch it, bub.

September 23, 1952 -
Responding to accusations that he diverted $18,000 in contributions into his pocket, Senator Richard M. Nixon rescues his candidacy for Vice President by insisting that he had never accepted any money.

Although Nixon does admit he accepted a cocker spaniel named Checkers for his daughter Tricia. The televised monologue rescues his political career.

Little is know about this political operative, Checkers. Recently unclassified FBI documents reveal that Checkers advised Nixon not to shave just prior to his famous televised debate with Kennedy. Checkers was also recorded on his deathbed in late '68 advising Nixon's men about creating a list of enemies of the future President.

September 23, 1969 -
An article in the Northern Illinois University student newspaper  propagated the rumor that "Paul is dead."

But if you play I'm so Tired from the White Album (and smoke an enormous amount of dope,) you hear the question Is Paul McCartney Dead?

And Revolution #9 implores, Turn me on dead man.

Well, sort of. Remember it's I buried Paul and not cranberry sauce.

And so it goes

Thursday, September 22, 2016

No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace as I have seen in one autumnal face

Today is the first day of Autumn.

By happy coincidence, it's also the first day of Fall.

Many people in the northern hemisphere are disturbed by the changes they see around them at about this time each year. It gets darker earlier, temperatures drop, leaves change color and die and the Red Sox tend to drop out of playoff contention.

There have been myths about the changing of the seasons as long as there have been children to lie to. Some primitive peoples believed that leaves changed color because Nature was pining for her abducted daughter; others blamed it on the seasonal absence of sunlight-fed chlorophyll, allowing xanthophyll, carotene, and antocyanin to determine leaf color. We may never know the truth.

The first day of Autumn is sometimes also referred to as the Autumnal Equinox (the autumnal equinox is when the Sun appears to cross the celestial equator from north to south.) The autumnal equinox brings the fall season to the Northern Hemisphere on: September 22 at 10:21 A.M. ET. Don't be alarmed by the title. It's just fall.

With courage and some heavy drinking, we can get through this thing.

September 22, 1957 -
The comedy-western series Maverick, premiered on ABC-TV on this date .

Jack Kelly's role as Bart Maverick was originally supposed to be just a one shot deal. However, the producers saw the great chemistry that he had with James Garner, and decided to keep him as a regular.

September 22, 1958 -
The Private Eye series, Peter Gunn, starring Craig Stevens premiered on this date

This was one of the first television shows to have its own original score and it was the first to feature modern jazz for a soundtrack. RCA released an album of music from Peter Gunn featuring the title song and other pieces. It reached #1 on Billboard's chart, stayed there ten weeks, and stayed on the list for the next two years.

September 22, 1964 -
Napoleon Solo and Illya Kuryakin, who kept the world safe on The Man from U.N.C.L.E, made their first appearance on NBC-TV on this date.

The stunts were usually done by actors David McCallum and Robert Vaughn as well as by stuntmen, and the best version was used. McCallum wasn't too keen on heights and Vaughan wasn't too keen on water - so they tried to avoid those stunts.

September 22, 1990 -
The Coen brothers' take on the classic gangsters film, Miller's Crossing, premiered in NYC on this date.

Writers Joel Coen and Ethan Coen suffered writer's block while writing Miller's Crossing. They took a three week break and wrote Barton Fink, a film about a writer with writer's block.

September 22, 1994 -
You could get a cup of coffee at Central Perk for the first time when Friends, premiered on NBC-TV on this date.

The orange couch used in Central Perk was found in the basement of the Warner Brothers studio.

Today in History:
September 22, 1761
George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz were crowned King and Queen of the Great Britain. Which is funny because George was not British. He was German. He had been Elector of Hanover. (Although he was the first King of England in a very long time that spoke English as his first language, if at all.)

But he ended his days, completely blind, increasingly deaf and totally insane locked up in Windsor Castle, with his son acting as Regent for the remainder of George III's life.

I've said it before - sometimes it's not so good to be King.

September 22, 1776 -
An American Captain was hanged as a spy with no trial by the British, under the orders of General William Howe, in New York City during the Revolutionary War on this date. He was considered as one of the incendiaries of the burning of NYC.

Moments before his execution, he expressed regret that he couldn't be hanged more than once. This remark catapulted him to posthumous fame (but only after his death), and Nathan Hale is revered to this day.

September 22, 1869 -
Richard Wagner's opera Das Rheingold premieres in Munich on this date.

Beer drinkers around the world rejoice!!!

September 22, 1960  (or 1958) -
Joan Marie Larkin, singer/ musician extraordinaire was born on this date.

If you love Rock and Roll, you love Joan

September 22, 1961 -
President John Kennedy took a break from hanging out with Frank Sinatra, shooting speed and having sex with Marilyn Monroe to sign a congressional act establishing the Peace Corps on this date.

The government-funded volunteer organization was created to fight hunger, disease, illiteracy, poverty, and lack of opportunity around the world.

Sometimes it good to be the President (and sometimes it sucks, as Mr. Kennedy would eventually find out.)

September 22, 1966  -
In between inviting the press to watch him use the bathroom and calling a tailor to order pants with extra long zippers, President Lyndon B. Johnson designated Columbus Day a federal public holiday to be celebrated on October 12.

In 1968, he moved it to the 2nd Monday of October.  In 2004, President George W. Bush set it to October 11. Columbus Day in 2016 is on Monday, the 10th of October.

September 22, 1980 -
In a stunning blow to America's feminine hygiene, consumer products manufacturer Procter and Gamble initiates the largest tampon recall in history, pulling Rely Tampons from store shelves, starting on this date.

The action results from the ongoing Toxic Shock Syndrome controversy.

No comment.

And so it goes.